Kamal is one of nearly 1 million Rohingya people living in refugee camps in Bangladesh. Many of the camp residents have witnessed horrific violence before fleeing in the northern Rakhine province of Myanmar.
“I will never forget the smell of the fires, the screams, these horrible screams. I see these sequences again and again, in my dreams, sometimes I even have flashbacks at daytime.”
“It’s mainly the smell that haunts me…. This smell I always got in my nose, whenever I want to eat something, when I am drinking… I cannot control it, it comes very suddenly.”
CBM is working with our long-term partner, Bangladesh’s Centre for Disability in Development (CDD), to support some of the most vulnerable people living in refugee camps in Cox’s Bazaar, including providing medical care and rehabilitation, psychological support and counselling and safe spaces for children. This is particularly important in a situation like this, where there are few prospects for camp residents of returning to their former lives, which increases depression rates and other mental health conditions.
Kamal is receiving psychosocial counselling with CDD, for his post-traumatic stress.
“I cannot talk to my relatives or neighbours about that, as they underwent terrible things themselves. But here, with this lady, it works somehow. I can tell her all that, it does me good and makes it a bit easier for me”.
Providing immediate but also ongoing support to people like Kamal is vital to help them cope and reduce the chance that they will experience long-term mental health problems.